Mealtime can be a big mess for toddlers. As a mom of a 16-month-old, I know the grind all too well. Picking up messes like spaghetti and yogurt from the floor is no doubt a parenting right of passage in those first few years, but all of this extra time with my floors had me wondering if there’s a way to cut back on the clean-up process. So, we tested suction plates and bowls for toddlers to find out which ones actually stay put.
I spent the better part of three weeks testing 13 popular suction plates and bowls for toddlers. Of the products we tested, the Bumkins Silicone Grip Dish(available at Amazon for $13.49) Is the very best suction dishware for your little one. The Bumkins Silicone Grip Dish won us over for several reasons, but mostly because my toddler son wasn’t able to lift the plate from a textured or smooth surface and throw it on the floor.
However, the Bumkins plate isn’t the only effective suction plate or bowl we tested. Additional brands we tested offer enticing features like divided sections for multiple foods and condiments, thoughtful designs that are compact and easy to store, and most of the plates we tested are dishwasher safe, so you don’t have to waste time scrubbing anything by hand.
Here are the best suction plates and bowls for toddlers we tested ranked, in order:
Bumkins Silicone Grip Dish
OXO Tot Stick & Stay Suction Bowl
Bamboo Bamboo Toddler Suction Plate
Avanchy Suction Bowl
Bamboo Bamboo Suction Bowl
Bumkins Suction Bowl
Munchkin Stay Put Suction Bowl
First Essentials by NUK Tri-Suction Bowl
Silikong Suction Plate for Toddlers
Avanchy Suction Plate
Silvo Silicone Child Feeding Plate with Suction Cups
OXO Tot Stick & Stay Suction Divided Plate
First Essentials by NUK Tri-Suction Plate
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Bumkins Silicone Grip Dish
Bamboo Bamboo Fox Suction Plate
How We Tested
What You Should Know About Suction Plates and Bowls
The Bumkins Grip Dish is our best suction plate pick because it offers long-term suction on a variety of surfaces, is made of durable silicone, and is easy to clean. This plate sticks better to a smooth surface like my quartz kitchen countertops and plastic highchair tray, as opposed to a textured surface like my wood dining table. For the most part, the plate stayed suctioned down to my table minus a few firm nudges. But, most of the plates and bowls in our roundup moved to some degree when pushed.
The Bumkins Silicone Grip Dish isn’t perfect, but it’s close enough that I’ll continue to use it with my toddler. The plate feels nice and sturdy like it’s going to last a while. More importantly, my toddler wasn’t able to unhinge this one during our month-long tests. Another factor that makes this plate a great choice is that it’s made of 100 percent food-grade silicone and free of harmful chemicals like BPAs, PVC, lead, or phthalates. It’s also dishwasher safe (hello, easy cleaning), unlike more expensive plates we tested from Avanchy and Bamboo Bamboo. A toddler-friendly plate that offers good suction, is easy to clean, and free of harmful chemicals? That’s a win-win in my household.
If I can offer you any piece of advice when using this plate, it’s this: For an extra good stick, dribble a few droplets of water on a clean, dry surface for optimum suction. I did this on my quartz countertop and the plate was stuck like glue, but it was still pretty simple to remove. If you get stuck, just slide your finger under a corner of the large suction piece on the underside of the plate. There's also a small pull tab on the bottom underside of the plate, but it's hard to find when the plate is stuck to a surface.
We also like that there are plenty of options to choose from when it comes to colors and designs. Bumkins Silicone Grip Dishes come in all sorts of colors, including a modern marble color, as well as character designs like Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Batman, and Winnie the Pooh that will make mealtime fun for your little one.
We really loved the Bamboo Bamboo Suction Plates because they stuck to the majority of surfaces we tested and are made from sturdy bamboo materials, but the price point is higher than most other plates we tested. It feels like a high-end plate that you’ll want to keep for years and years.
The quality and performance of these plates are nearly identical to another bamboo plate we tested from Avanchy (keep reading for our review), but the Bamboo Bamboo plates are about $6 less expensive for basically the same product and offer a variety of designs depending on what you’re looking for. Unlike Avanchy, which only sells circle plates in three different sizes, the Bamboo Bamboo plates incorporate playful animal designs including a fox, rabbit, and sheep, as well as regular circle plates that can easily be stored in your kitchen cabinet.
Bamboo Bamboo warns that the plate may break if dropped, however, we tossed the plate onto a tile floor and threw it against the wall several times without any damage. The suction piece on the bottom is removable and can be cleaned in the dishwasher, but, like other Bamboo suction plates and bowls featured in our roundup, this one plate will need to be hand-washed and dried.
Hi, I’m Rachel Murphy. But, most of the time, I’m better known as “mom” to my son, Arlo, age 16 months, and my daughter, Reese, age 6. Ever since I became pregnant with my daughter over six years ago, I’ve spent countless hours researching children’s products, searching for the best options for my family. So, rest assured you’re in good hands (because I don’t want a big mess all over the floor any more than you do).
When my son began eating regular table foods, I wanted him to get the real experience of eating from dishware designed with toddlers in mind instead of just straight off his plastic Stokke high chair tray every time. I knew that basic plates and bowls weren’t going to cut it, so I turned to the power of suction to help me find the right mix of dishware that would actually stay in place.
For nearly a month, my toddler and I tested 13 different suction plates and bowls that are suitable for children ages 6 months and up. To identify which products to test, I researched the top suction plates and bowls from well-known kids companies like OXO, NUK, and even fancy bamboo suction dishware that’s sold at Pottery Barn. I spent time scouring Amazon, looking for recommendations from other parents of plates and bowls that can stand up to my toddler’s growing strength and determination to make as many messes as possible with his food.
I tested the plates and bowls on a variety of surfaces such as glass patio tables, wood dining tables, quartz kitchen countertops, and plastic high chair trays to find out which ones work best. The suction plates and bowls were also tested on crumb-covered surfaces and wet surfaces using a few drops of water to a giant puddle. Surprisingly, a few drops of water seemed to offer better suction to some of the products we tested.
Of course, since you’re a busy parent like me, cleaning is another important factor to consider. Most of the suction bowls and plates we tested are dishwasher-safe, but some are made of certain materials that aren’t made to be submerged in water. We took other essential details into consideration, too, like how easy it was to use the plate or bowl, the quality, portability, storage, and if it offered any special features or not.
What You Should Know About Suction Plates and Bowls
Securing the plates and bowls before (and sometimes during) mealtime
Most of the plates and bowls we tested must be pushed down onto a surface in order to trigger the suction. The extra pressure helps secure the plate to the surface—most of the time. Some of the products we tested, like the First Essentials by NUK Tri-Suction Plates, needed to be pressed down multiple times during mealtime. So, if you’re hoping for a few minutes to yourself while your toddler chows down like me, just know that won’t always be the case without having a big mess to clean up.
Consider how you’ll store the dishes
Suction plates and bowls can be odd shapes and sizes, meaning that they won’t always fit nicely and neatly inside of your kitchen cabinets. The larger plates may need to be stored separately from your everyday dishes due to their large and cumbersome sizes. But, we did find that some of the bowls, especially the ones that come in a two or three-pack, easily stack on top of one another for clutter-free storage. If you’ve got a tiny kitchen, you may want to consider how you’ll store the bowls before making a decision.
No plate or bowl is perfect
In my dream world, there’s an affordable suction plate and bowl that my toddler won’t be able to mess with during mealtime, but after testing 13 different options, there was no perfect product. However, some suction plates and bowls performed better than others, but much of it hinges on the kind of surface you’ll be placing the plate or bowl on. Even our favorite picks slide around ever-so-slightly when nudged, but they still offered enough suction to prevent dinnertime from becoming a total mess.
Other Suction Plates and Bowls We Tested
OXO Tot Stick & Stay Suction Bowl
If you prefer a bowl to a plate, we think that the OXO Tot Stick & Stay Bowl is the best suction bowl for toddlers because it’s easy to clean, has great suction, and is larger than any other bowl we tested. The bowl is made without BPA, phthalates, and PVC. The bowl is similar in design to its sibling that we tested, the OXO Tot Stick & Stay Suction Plate, but the bowl version offers better suction and stayed put in almost every test we put it through.
The bowl works best on a smooth, flat surface like a kitchen countertop, but, surprisingly, the bowl still worked well on my textured wood dining table and on my son’s plastic high chair tray. Of all the bowls we tested, the OXO Tot Stick & Stay Suction Bowl is the largest. So, if your toddler is like mine and can pack away quite a bit of oatmeal or spaghetti, then you’ll appreciate how much food this bowl can handle without causing a big mess.
One of my least favorite parts of suction plates and bowls of any kind is the removal process, but OXO makes it easier than ever. The suction portion of the bowl is separate from the bowl itself. When you’re ready to clean up, turn the bowl counterclockwise until it detaches from the suction base. Then, remove the suction base from the table by lifting up on the side. The whole process takes less than 10 seconds, and you can put it straight in the dishwasher for an easy clean.
Avanchy, a brand sold at Pottery Barn and other retailers, is the other brand of bamboo plates and bowls we tested. This bowl, like the Bamboo Bamboo products, is a bit of a splurge at $19.99 a pop. But, if you’ve got the budget, this bowl is a great choice. It performed similarly to its plate sibling, sticking to clean and dry textured and smooth surfaces with no problem. The suction ring on the bottom of the bowl is removable, so you can pull it right off to clean by tugging on the tab located on the suction piece.
Again, the quality of this bowl is above and beyond the plastic and silicone options we tested. The outer rim of the bowl does not bend like the Bumkins Silicone Grip Bowl since Avanchy makes its products from 100 percent bamboo. As for the other materials, the plate is biodegradable, environmentally friendly, non-toxic, and is coated with an FDA-approved, food-grade varnish. It also comes with a spoon, so you don’t have to worry about buying additional products to use with it.
Bamboo Bamboo Baby Suction Bowl and Matching Spoon Set
This bowl looks and feels just like the Avanchy set, and to be quite honest, there doesn’t seem to be any immediate differences in the two bowls. When placed side by side, the Bamboo Bamboo bowl and the Avanchy bowl are the same sizes, but the logo for Bamboo Bamboo is printed on the side of the bowl, while Avanchy’s logo is on the base of the bowl.
The two bowls are very close in price depending on where you purchase. Like Avanchy, the Bamboo Bamboo bowl also comes with a spoon, and the cleaning process is basically the same. However, Bamboo Bamboo does recommend applying a teaspoon of coconut oil to the bamboo each month to moisturize the product.
As for suction, Bamboo Bamboo recommends placing it on a non-porous surface, which explains why it stuck so well to my quartz countertops. The suction was OK on our plastic high chair tray, but it needed a few firm presses throughout mealtime to stay in place to keep it from coming loose.
The Bumkins suction bowl is made from bacteria-resistant silicone and is BPA free. It can also be placed in the microwave, freezer, and dishwasher. The silicone is pretty thick, but, unlike other hard plastic bowls we tested, this one is easy to bend when you pick it up (or if your toddler pushes in on the sides). The base of the bowl features a small tab to pull when you’re ready to remove the bowl from the surface.
While we love the Bumkins Grip Dish, the Bumkins suction bowl didn't stick well to crumb-covered surfaces, nor did it adhere to my plastic high chair tray for very long. If you're going to use this bowl with your toddler, make sure to do it on a clean, dry, smooth surface to avoid food on the floor.
The Munchkin Stay Put Suction Bowls offer the most bang for your buck since they come in a three-pack for around $9.99. The bowls, which are designed for ages 6 months and up, can be placed in the microwave and in the top rack of your dishwasher. Made without BPAs, the bowls feature three different sizes including small, medium, and large. However, the largest Munchkin bowl was still smaller than our favorite suction bowl for toddlers from OXO.
For the most part, this bowl stays in place and doesn’t slide around when stuck to a clean and dry flat surface. But, this bowl did not stick for long and was easy to slide around on textured surfaces and it didn’t stick well on water or crumbs. You’ll have to give this bowl a hard press in order to get it to stick on a smooth surface, and when you’re ready to remove it, just pull the tab on the bottom portion of the suction piece.
Although these suction bowls are from the same line as the First Essentials by Nuk Tri-Suction Plates, the bowls offered more suction and, therefore, performed better than the plate version. The bottom of the bowl has three large suction cups, but this bowl still isn’t perfect. It barely stuck to our high chair tray for more than a few seconds during use and I had to reattach the bowl several times so my son could finish eating without making a mess.
The bowl comes with a lid in case you need to save any food for later. Another bonus? The bowls can be stacked on top of one another for easy storage in your kitchen. As for cleaning, the bowl can be placed in the dishwasher, however, I recommend washing it by hand if you’re serving a meal like spaghetti to remove any saturated stains.
The Silikong Suction Plate is similar to the Bumkins Grip Dish in appearance and quality. It's made from 100 percent food-grade silicone, and like many others we tested, it is free of BPA, PVC, phthalates, and lead. Aside from our favorite suction plate, the Bumkins Grip Dish, the Silikong Suction Plate is the only other one that says it can be placed in the oven. At $13.99, it's pretty on par for the price as compared to other suctions plates we tried out, and it even comes with a spoon, like the Avanchy products we tested.
The plate didn’t play nice with crumb-covered surfaces, but it mostly stayed in place on my kitchen countertop when sprinkled with a few drops of water. By now, you probably know that you’ll need to push down on any suction plate to activate the grip, and Silikong is no exception to this rule. Although it offered substantial suction, my toddler was able to move this plate on his high chair and our dining room table.
There’s a very small tab on the underside of the plate to help you detach it from the surface, but it’s hard to find. You’re better off sliding your finger under the suction base and removing it that way.
We tested two sets of suction plates and bowls made from bamboo, and the Avanchy Suction Plate was one of them. Like many of the plates we tested, this one is divided up into three sections to keep foods separated. It’s also one of the most expensive suction plates we tested with a retail price of $19.99, but it does come with a matching spoon so you don’t have to spend extra on utensils.
One thing to note is the quality of this plate (and the other bamboo options in general). It’s durable without being heavy, and, due to its hefty construction, feels like it would last a very long time. In addition to Amazon, you can find this plate for sale at Pottery Barn, and other stores.
This plate stuck to smooth and textured surfaces, but it does lose its suction over time. If you have a toddler who likes to play with their dishware, they may try to slide this one around, but it will take some real muscle to pull it up from whatever surface you’ve got it stuck to.
These plates aren’t dishwasher safe either, so you’ll have to wash and dry them by hand. However, my husband accidentally ran this plate through the dishwasher and everything was fine, but I wouldn’t recommend that as a regular method of cleaning for this plate.
The Silivo Baby Placemat with Suction Cups says it fits most high chairs, but it was too large for my Stokke high chair tray. However, I was able to test this mat on my dining room table and quartz kitchen countertop. Before I dive into the plate’s performance, it’s worth noting that the plate emitted a very strong chemical-like odor when I opened the package. That smell goes away after washing (you can run it through the dishwasher), but it was rather unpleasant and was the only plate that gave off an odor upon arrival.
The plate features four suction cups (one in each corner) that you’ll need to press down on to secure it to the table or tray. When it comes to wet and crumb-covered surfaces, the suction is less than stellar. Silvo’s suction plate does move on clean and even surfaces, but, thanks to the non-skid silicone bottom, it should stay in place long enough for your toddler to get through dinner without toss the plate across the kitchen. Fingers crossed.
One thing we liked about this plate is that it comes in several kid-friendly animal designs like elephants and ducks. We also like that it’s made without BPA, BPS, PVC, lead, or phthalates. However, it’s also the largest plate that we tested, making it difficult to store inside of a cabinet.
OXO is one of my favorite brands for kitchen and bathroom items, so I had high hopes for the company’s version of suction plates for toddlers. However, my experience was not the one I was hoping to have. The plate offered barely any suction on my wood dining room table, which has a slight texture to it. I found that this plate works best on smooth and flat surfaces like my quartz kitchen countertop or glass patio table, but it didn’t offer enough suction to last the duration of mealtime like our favorite, the OXO Tot Stick & Stay Suction Bowl. Ultimately, this plate became very easy for my toddler to slide around.
One place this plate excels, though, is the multiple divided sections for food, including a circle compartment in the center of the plate, which is a great place for dips and condiments like hummus or mustard. The plate is dishwasher safe, but I found it’s best to scrub by hand with soap and a sponge, then rinse with hot water. Make sure to remove the bottom suction piece first, which unscrews, to clean all the nooks and crannies.
At around $5 for two plates, the First Essentials by NUK Tri-Suction Plates are the most affordable suction plates we tested. But, if you’re looking for a plate that’s going to last and stays in place, this one probably isn’t for you. The plates feel flimsy and cheap, and like you’re probably going to replace them after a few weeks of continuous use. However, they are very lightweight, making them ideal for traveling or using sparingly at a grandparent’s house.
As for how it sticks to surfaces, the underside of the plate features three suction cups, but they’re pretty useless. I had to keep applying pressure to this plate multiple times during mealtime, which isn’t ideal when there’s food on the plate, to get it to stay in place for even just a minute.
My toddler was able to move this around, undoing the plate’s grip from my dining room table and countertop. It didn’t stick very well to the plastic high chair tray, either. The plates, which are designed for ages 6 months and up, are microwave and dishwasher safe.
Rachel Murphy covers smart home for Reviewed. She holds a journalism degree from the University of Central Florida. Previously, she worked as a freelance writer for several major outlets and as an associate editorial producer for ABC News' Good Morning America.
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